Roastmaster Shaun Aupiais has flown the South African flag high in El Salvador where he won the Producer and Roaster Forum’s international coffee roasting championship.
Nelson Mandela Bay, South Africa (20 March 2023) – A South African Roastmaster from Nelson Mandela Bay, Shaun Aupiais, this weekend flew the SA flag high when he won an international coffee roasting contest in El Salvador.
Participating in the Producer and Roaster Forum’s El Salvador international coffee roasting championship, hosted and organised by Perfect Daily Grind in San Salvador, El Salvador, Aupiais won the high-profile competition by doing what he loves best.
Red Band Barista Academy co-founder, Aupiais, competed against the best in the world – several international coffee roasting professionals – who were all working with the same green coffee beans.
The competition was preceded by an orientation day where the roasters had two practice slots for each competitor, and only one shot on the day of the competition (Friday, March 17).
Aupiais is looking forward to trying out his winning prize – an Aillio Bullet Roaster R1 V2 – when he gets back home to South Africa. The Red Band Barista Academy is a project of the Leva Foundation, a social upliftment non-profit organisation based in Gqeberha in the Eastern Cape.
Red Band Barista Academy was founded in 2014 and has an employment rate of over 90% of its barista graduates. In August 2022 the Red Band Roasting Academy was established to train unemployed youth in the art of coffee roasting.
The win in El Salvador was just the dollop of cream on top of an exceptional trip to the coffee mecca of the world, Central America, by Aupiais and Leva Foundation CEO, Ryan le Roux.
The dynamic team was invited to speak at the Producer and Roaster Forum’s El Salvador event, where they shared their stories of impact of how the coffee industry is influencing unemployed youth’s lives in South Africa and the rest of Africa.
They also attended workshops, cupping sessions and other talks during the two-day event in El Salvador and will be visiting coffee farms in Guatemala and Costa Rica before returning home.